Saturday, April 26, 2008

Lumin Beings & Loony Moonbats

New policy: Saturdays will feature an edited post from two years previous. No post on Sundays. Policy may change at any time without my noticing.


In certain ways, it's very simple: you become like that to which you look up. This is one of the bases of normal human development. As children, we require models to imitate, identify with, and internalize. My son, who is three years-old, already mimics and/or mocks everything I do. Yesterday I told him to stop playing in the garbage in the kitchen. He looks at me and calmly says, get a grip, Daddy.

This "mimesis" is fundamental to being human, and it doesn't stop in early childhood. It emerges again quite powerfully in adolescence, during which there a deep hunger for models -- which often end up being bad ones by default -- to imitate. You'll likely see it again in your professional life, as you try to define your own approach to your craft or profession. At first the model will seem exterior, but eventually, through an osmotic psychic process that isn't entirely clear, we "become" the model from the inside. We no longer require the external support.

It is just so with the spiritual life. Anonymous Friend writes that one venerates (i.e., loves and respects) "a non-incarnated being -- a departed person, a saint, or a hierarchical being -- in a disinterested manner. Your veneration -- which includes love, respect, gratitude, the desire to conform, etc. -- cannot fail to create an invisible link of sympathy with its object," as like calls out to like.

He continues: "It may be in a subtle and dramatic way, or rather in a slow, gradual and almost imperceptible way -- this does not matter -- the day will come when you will experience the presence... not a fluidic, semi-electrical presence close to you in space -- as in the apparition of a phantom or ghost -- but the breath of radiant serenity, of which you know with certain knowledge that the source from which it emanates is not at all in you. It influences and fills you but it does not take its origin in you; it comes from outside of you.

"Just as you know, in drawing near to a fireplace, that the warmth that you feel does not arise from you but rather from the fireplace, so also do you feel that the breath of serenity in question is due to an objective presence."

Once such a relationship is established, "it is up to you to remain silently concentrated so that the relationship established is subsequently developed, i.e., that it gains in intensity and clarity -- that it becomes a meeting in full consciousness." (My vibrant relationship with Anonymous Friend is a fine example of what he's talking about.)

It is largely because of our postmodern materialism and cynicism that we no longer seem to appreciate a process that is quite natural and must have felt obvious to generations past. In other words, something unnatural and inhuman has to be superimposed over this process in order for us to deny or be unaware of its operation.

Perhaps it is also because the process requires a certain childlike trust and unguarded spontaneity -- the very same way the little boy expectantly looks up to his father. We begin with a “feeling response” that is actually of greater significance than the literal truth or falsehood of the teacher’s claims.

Rather, a sort of “chemistry” or “resonance” must first be established -- which is actually very similar to psychotherapy. It is as if one must first be capable of recognizing someone who speaks “from truth” before we can discuss this or that particular truth. You might say that the true spiritual "medium" is the message. In fact, for many people with a "bhakti" temperament, this devotion is all they require.

If we try to identify with this source before honoring it as greater than ourselves, we will simply build a new addition to our ego. This is the esoteric meaning of "honor your father and mother." The ego can either orient itself around its true parent or pledge its loyalty to the "father of lies."

Throughout this process is the dual mystery of word and incarnation. In every case of identification and eventual internalization, it is as if an external seed is planted in the fertile ground of the soul, eventually taking root there and blossoming on its own. Then it is capable of producing its own seed. Sonflowering seeds. It is a very organic process. But the garden must be regularly watered, weeded, and harvested. Or, topped and smoked.

We are all looking for our fixed "star" to guide us -- that which we may follow without reserve. This star does not necessarily have to take human form, but it can be a big help. The star is your future Self, calling you to join it.

In life, we can become so lost that we seem to lose our orbit, like a planet that is too far away and begins to drift off aimlessly into space. Secular leftism is an entire philosophy that elevates the drifting planet to a virtue. Gaia replaces the sun, which, ironically, makes secularism the most vain and self-centered of all philosophies.

But it is also an infra-human philosophy, for man was made to revolve around the spiritual sun, just as a boy was made to revolve around his terrestrial father, who should be a reflection of the celestial light. Take away the light and warmth of the sun, and we live in a cold, dead universe: a culture of death is its natural consequence and intellectual blandmaiden.

Have you ever seen the sun shining at midnight? Even when all else is dark, in the middle of the night, you can see the light of the sun reflecting off of the moon. Who is the moon? The moon has always been conceptualized in feminine ways -- after all "moon" and "menses" are etymologically related. Wisdom is sophia or Mary, and true wisdom is always reflected from a greater source.

The moon is not the sun, and we are not God. But we can become receptacles or "luminaries," that is, lumin beings who ride the wild soph on waves of divine light. Or we may become glittering moonbats, those dim bulbs who form a circle and flick their Bics to look for the sun.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Humanity is One... Unfortunately

Why is it that these Buddhist trolls who believe the self is an illusion always have the most unattractive selves? I suppose it's like an unappealing woman who becomes a feminist and decides that gender is just a social construct anyway, so she can pretend she's not missing anything. Likewise, what these vulgarized Buddhists call "emptiness" we call a "major blind spot." It doesn't reflect well on Buddhism, which obviously has its share of perennial wisdom, even if it can never be "ultimate."

I just read a book by one of these blinkered new-age Buddhist types, and all I can say is, if your prose has the capacity to set my teeth on edge, you're probably not as liberated as you think. Rather, you're just in denial of the malignant power of your self, or, at the very least, unaware of the aesthetic requirements of Truth. (Of course, this has no common measure with the inevitable psychic "disturbance" caused by genuine sages, saints, and mystics, which is a mark of authenticity, Jesus being absolutely paradigmatic in this regard. Only the ultimate Life could inspire the ultimate murder in the wrong type of people.)

No, the body and the Self (as opposed to the local and contingent ego) are both real and enduring (i.e., the Real is reflected in both body and Self). Last night the Dreamer provided me with another vivid reminder of this. As I have said before, for all practical purposes, I don't think you can really eliminate mind parasites, any more than you could eliminate all the bacteria and viruses from the world (nor would you want to). But you can "outgrow" your mind parasites. Or, put it this way: if you have a particularly disruptive and dysfunctional mind parasite, you can confront it head on, say, in therapy, and gain insight into its ways and means and try to rid yourself of its mean ways.

But in a more general sense, it is also possible to simply become "larger" and more capacious than your mind parasites, so that they no longer contain you, but rather, the reverse: you contain them by virtue of your psychic "growth" or maturity, and mind parasites can't grow if you don't feed them with the experiences they require. I suppose it's similar to having a robust immune system that can either ward off infections or tamp them down before they get out of hand. An immature or compromised immune system can't do that. The point is that the same infection -- say, the flu -- can be deadly for a person with a compromised immune system, e.g., children, the elderly, AIDS patients, but not a big problem for others. Same parasite; very different result.

Just so, the identical mind parasite -- let's say, envy, because it is so ubiquitous and pesky -- can be contained in one person, but become the ruling passion (i.e., the container) of another, say, a leftist. In so many ways, the left is simply the mind parasite of envy writ large, the normalization of a particular soul-pathology. And once the parasite is normalized, there is no hope of transcending it.

To cite an obvious example, you often hear clueless leftist neo-Marxist elites such as Obama say that they just don't understand how a middle class conservative can "vote against his economic interests" -- which is just another way of saying that they just don't understand people who aren't plagued by envy. Of course the little people are envious. They just channel it into guns, or religion, or homophobia, or voting Republican.

But in truth, affluent leftist elites -- the Hollywood herd of independent minds is the quintessential example -- merely project their own envy into "the little people" for whom they have such palpable contempt, under the guise of "caring" about them. This is why the ministrations of the leftist always feel so creepy and malignant to a normal person. It feels so creepy because it is so narcissistic and "off key," and has nothing to do with your actual personhood. Rather, it specifically robs you of your unique personhood -- which is your most precious gift, being that it represents "freedom lived" (in the higher sense).

For example, I heard someone say that Obama's understanding of the average American seems about as deep as a Bruce Springsteen song, to such an extent that he should appoint him Secretary of Labor. Now, I was a union member and working class stiff for half of my adult life, and it was strictly laughable that Springsteen's depressingly cartoonish vision of a blue collar American Hell had anything to do with my life.

In fact, based upon his morose lyrics, I am quite sure that my life -- and my internal world -- was more rewarding than his. I certainly wouldn't want to be him for anything. I mean imagine, if you will, the darkness of someone who confesses to actually receiving spiritual sustenance from Maureen Dowd and Paul Krugman. That is quite literally hell, equivalent to gaining "intellectual sustenance" from Air America or huffingtonpost.

Unlike me, Springsteen was and is a pampered millionaire who has never worked a day in his life. But outward circumstances do not alter the contours of the self, which again, endures. In Springsteen's case, he had to do something with his envy, since it could no longer be rationalized, so he simply put it into people like me. At the same time, he became a leftist, which allowed him to be free of my imaginary (projected) envy of him, since now the government will "appease" my (his) envy by taking away stuff from "the wealthy" and giving it to contemptible losers like me. I wish that Springsteen would just stop voting against his economic interests and leave me alone.

The whole thing is so transparent. When the left complains about "tax cuts for the wealthy," this is simply their psychic transformation of greed and envy into a bogus altruism that allows their parasites to "sleep." But these parasites never sleep, as the Dreamer reminded me last night. What the leftist really means is that "poor people are envious of my stuff, so we'd better give these losers some 'free' stuff from the government, so I won't feel so persecuted by my undeserved wealth." This is why all the Hollywood entertainers complain about "CEO pay" or "income disparity," but not a single one of them complains about the excessive salaries of movie stars or rappers. You will never see Sean Penn structure his contract so there is not such a chasm between his salary and that of the lowly set carpenter or assistant editor.

The self does not end at your skin boundaries, that's for sure. Projection is going on all the time, and it's best to try to understand what you're projecting rather than imagining that you are free of this ubiquitous mechanism. You may not feel your toxicity, but that's because we do.

In other words, before you blithely proclaim that "all is one," you had better understand what this implies, i.e., its dark side of unwanted psychic influences passed from mind to mind. Obviously this applies on both the micro (individual) and macro (collective) levels, and both above and below. For example, Obama's bogus call for "unity" is actually just tyranny in disguise, since his notion of "bringing us together" is "to have conservatives live with getting a 100% liberal agenda jammed down their throats" (Bill Otis). There is the white unity from which the diversity of colors emerges, and the black unity that denies diversity by blending all the colors.

Likewise, Jimmy Carter is a transparently loathsome, vicious, and poisonous human being who is not only clueless to his evildoing, but sanctimoniously imagines that he is morally superior to the rest of us. Carter will never know how toxic he is, even though (or, more precisely, because) the toxins leak out everywhere, and we must bear them. And yet, he is at peace.

Indeed, Carter is a man of peace. But like so many others of his ilk -- Gandhi comes to mind -- he's really just a peaceive aggressive S.O.B. in denial of his belligerent parasites. Never trust a peace-monger, unless they happen to be carrying a big sword and know how to consciously use it, and whom to use it upon. Righteous aggression is infinitely preferable to the morally depraved passive-aggressiveness of the left, who are quite naturally kind to the cruel (e.g., Hamas) while being cruel to the kind.

Anyway, just as the immune system is based upon a sophisticated system of identification in which your body is able to distinguish self from not-self, the more you know about your mind parasites, the less likely you will be to act them out in the manner of yesterday's "enlightened" troll, who is the only person who is unaware of his samskary monsters. In short, if you are unaware of your mind parasites, someone else will be, for I regret to inform you that We Are the World, and there's not a damn thing you can do about it.

This is the peril of living in the "human community," which is a vast field of projection, for better and worse; without projection, we could never become human, but pathological projection leaves us either less than or "all too" human. Thus the wise words of Jesus, "watch and pray," or pray while keeping one eye on your mind parasites, so they don't prey on you -- or others.

Reminds me of a Big Joe Turner song, in which he assures his scheming woman,

If you see me sleeping, baby,
Please don't think that I'm drunk.
I got one eye on my pistol
And the other one on my trunk.

Leftists have hijacked the educational establishment to use it as a huge projective field in which to infect children and young adults with their mind parasites. Dr. Sanity:

"Taking the mind of a child and feeding it exclusively on your ideological pablum is not only the most cruel and abusive of behaviors; it also ensures that such a mind becomes cognitively stunted and morally impaired (much like the minds of teachers so steeped in ideological bullshit like Bill Ayers and his cohorts from the 'loving' 60's, who so proudly and caually approve of oppression and violence toward those who disagree with them)."

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Cosmic Man and the Source of Certitude

Last night the Dreamer gave me a series of vivid dreams that confirmed most everything I wrote in my post yesterday, including, most importantly, the existence of the Dreamer himself. That's a form of confirmation and a source of certainty, but it obviously isn't "scientific" certainty. In fact, whatever I write, I feel as if it is backed by the full faith and credit of forces greater than myself, hence, the certainty that is so bobnoxious to trolls.

On the other hand, I often wonder at the source of the scientific materialist's certainty, since it is a metaphysic that doesn't permit man access to any certainty at all. Only revelation can do that, understood in its three senses as the Cosmos, the uncreated Intellect, and Scripture. So why is the materialist so insistent about his beliefs? It makes no sense. Of all people, they should be the ones to not only confess ultimate ignorance, but the impossibility of exiting that impoverished, third-world state in any absolute way that transcends matter.

But they don't. Rather, they are filled with certainty, which is only a disguised form of pseudo-faith. Today at American Thinker there is a piece that touches on this, The Left's Theft of the Open Society and the Scientific Method. It goes into a topic we have discussed here in the past, that is, the curious fact -- Orwellian, even -- that George Soros, one of the sweetest sugar daddies of the sour infantile left, claims to be an advocate of Karl Popper's "open society," when his leftist philosophy represents its single greatest threat. It is strictly impossible to believe in the open society and to be a man of the left. Impossible. Popper was a liberal, not a leftist. How can someone be so stupid -- unless they aren't stupid at all, just evil? Yes, that was ratorical.

But this is hardly anything new. Carson writes of the truism that "the Left misappropriates intellectual capital for perverse ends, in order to lend itself a veneer of respectability and befuddle its critics." I'm not a big fan of Popper's philosophy -- I much prefer his coontemporary, Polanyi, who covered the same ground as Popper, but in a deeper way that is entirely compatible with religion. In fact, to my knowledge, Popper was a materialist, which automatically makes his philosophy ungroundable, and rooted in the same metaphysical error as his opponents. To blame Plato for Marx is like blaming Moses for Chomsky.

As Carson notes, Popper's main villain was "Marxist historical inevitability and its pink cousin Western progressivism. We cannot predict scientific discoveries. Otherwise, they would not be discoveries. Scientific discoveries have an enormous influence on the future. Therefore, we cannot predict the future. Marxists and progressives who think that they represent the future are dangerous and deluded."

But Popper was ultimately wrong because man does have access to certainty, just not the horizontal certainty of scientism or leftist historicism. Rather, he has access to a realm of "vertical certainty" that comes clothed in various symbolic or exoteric forms that must be "decoded" to reveal their essential harmony and their unitary source in the Cosmic Dreamer.

In this sense, religion is certainly "falsifiable," just not in the scientific/materialistic sense of the word. For example, to say that "God is evil" is easily falsifiable on the plane of a priori metaphysical certitude, just as "all men are created equal" is easily confirmable. Besides, to say that "falsifiability" is the key to knowledge is like saying that "no" is the key to "yes." Again, as per Gödel, man has a source of certainty that cannot be reduced to any logical system.

You can never vanquish the left on its own materialistic level, otherwise you have made the central concession that matter is the only level. It is fighting ire with fire. A Popperian would have to say: we hold the following hypothesis to be untrue because unfalsifiable, that all men are created equal.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled program about the human body. Speaking of which, is it really possible that biology and natural selection tell us everything we need to know about the human body? What a moronic belief. It's like suggesting that physics tells us everything we need to know about music or architecture. I suppose in a way it does, being that architecture is "frozen music," just as quantum physics suggests that the ponderable world is a kind of "solid energy." Therefore, man's body is a combination of geometry + music. And we are once again back to Male and Female, or the Absolute and the Infinite.

Obviously, everything we know can only be known within the "environment" of our human form, both in its objective and subjective modes. Nevertheless, the human form is absolute, being that man, unlike any other animal, is capable of transcendent truth. In other words, as Schuon points out, "the human form cannot be transcended, its sufficient reason being precisely to express the Absolute, hence the untranscendable." Critically, this cuts off any purely evolutionist, reductionist viewpoint at the knees -- or ankles, really. For if man could be reduced to the forces of natural selection, his form "would be the result of a prolonged elaboration starting from animal forms; an elaboration that is at once arbitrary and unlimited." No final truth could be known, including that one.

Do you see the point? In this context, there could exist no truth-bearing animal. The ontological gap between the highest animal and the lowest man is so great as to be quite literally infinite, as infinite as the gaps between being and non-being, or between a living and non-living cosmos. In fact, to even say "cosmos" is to say life and mind, no? Here's a hint:

"The word Cosmos... meant originally 'order,' and this order is perceived as harmony, as consonance between ourselves and the Universe. This idea was developed as the correspondence between the Macrocosmos (the World) and the Microcosmos, or Man, with sometimes the Temple as link, as 'proprotional mean' between the two" (Perry).

Thus when you "go to church" -- in whatever form -- you are attempting to reconcile the Micro- and Macrocosmos; or, to be perfectly accurate, to personally experience their a priori unity. You know, One Cosmos. Under you-know-who, the only thing it could possibly be under. Call it 1 under O, if you like. It's certainly not "one cosmos over matter," much less "one mind over Darwin." That is strictly impossible.

Rather, you can only know about a unitary cosmos to the extent that you yourself are one: if thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. Again, obvious, is it not? The human mind intuits the prior oneness of existence because that is the human privilege. It cannot be surpassed by "evolution," because it is already ultimate. "The invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made" (Rom: 1:20).

By this we know, that all human properties proceed from one; that they all have but one only root and mother; otherwise, one man could not understand another.... Man has indeed all the forms of all the three worlds lying in him; for he is a complete image of God, or of the Being of all beings. -- Jacob Boehme

Of this you may be certain. For it is the certainty without which there can be none, and to deny it is to deny the very roots of knowledge. Plus, Petey said so, and that should be enough for anyOne.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Body of Your Dreams (4.22.10)

If the human body carries a message, who's the messenger? Is it Darwin or God? Or some weird hybrid, like Dargod or Godwin? In other words, if the body is a reflective surface, does it only reflect the below, or does it also convey information about the above?

As we have discussed before, this is a problem science can't even pose, let alone resolve, because it excludes at the outset that which it is not predisposed to believe. But for the believer, there can be no privilege higher than Truth, regardless of where it leads or comes from. Science can only deal with a small subset of this greater Truth, and cannot even justify the existence of its own assertions, as per our friend Gödel.

Speaking of Gödel, now that I think about it, there were probably three or four singular intellectual developments in the 20th century that must be counted as being of the utmost importance to metaphysics, for they decisively undermined the entire metaphysical framework of reductionistic scientism.

In no particular order, these would be Gödel's theorems, which proved that any sufficiently complex logical system contains assumptions that cannot be justified by the system, but which are nevertheless true in the platonic sense (by extension, this means that a logical system can be consistent or complete, but not both).

Never forget Gödel.

Second, the nonlocality of the cosmos, as per the "experimental metaphysics" of Alain Aspect, which showed that subatomic particles are in instantaneous communion, irrespective of the distance involved.

Third, the emergence of chaos and complexity theories, revealing the deep fractal order of the cosmos at all levels, and how complex systems are governed by nonlocal attractors.

And fourth, the systematic mapping of the unconscious mind, showing that human thought results from a dialectical (or "bi-logical") synthesis of the asymmetrical conscious and the symmetrical unconscious mind.

Any attempt to comprehend the world without these deep truths will be feeble at best. As you may have noticed, religion has no difficulty accommodating these truths (indeed, it rests upon them), whereas they are highly problematic for any linear, atomistic, rationalistic, or reductionistic metaphysic. For example, anyone who has felt the real presence of a Great Soul who is no longer technically living, has no problem with nonlocality. I mean, I rely upon guidance from the "communion of saints" in the same way another person might rely upon wikipedia. I just take it for granted that they can speak to one in the here and now, across any spatial or temporal boundaries. It's not magic. Rather, it would be magic if they couldn't.

Nor does any religious person have a problem with the idea that science can provide no final answers to the quandary of existence. Rather, he is very comfortable with the provocative symbolism of revelation, which vaults the mind into a higher and deeper understanding, into the very dimension from which truth and revelation emanate like so many sparks from a central fire. Science can't do that.

And surely, no believer has a problem with the idea of mysterious archetypal attractors that seem to canalize or lure existence from a nonlocal phase space. Isn't this why we pray to do the Creator's will, to conform ourselves to the greatest and most attractive Attractor of them all?

And what sophisticated believer would be a big enough ass to think that mere logic exhausts the Real? Please. We thank God for the unruly symmetrical logic of the unconscious mind, for it is truly the Spice of Life. Without it, we couldn't have imagination, poetry, mythology (in its higher sense), and even the visionary leaps of the true scientist. If not for the unconscious (I should really say "transconscious" or "metaconscious"), bean-counting mathematicians would be the legislators of this world, instead of poets and prophets.

Anyway. Where were we? Yes, the message of the human body. That reminds me. Did you know that I've never had a professional massage on my human body? I think it might help this persistent stiffness in my neck. But I'm the kind of person who likes his space. Boundary issues, I suppose. Being touched like that by a stranger might just make me more tense. And if it's a man, forget about it. Is that homophobia? What do you think? An elderly, unattractive woman. That's what I need.

Now, as we were saying yesterday, the supreme principle breaks out into the absolute and infinite, or the male principle and the female principle. As Schuon writes, "each of the two bodies, the masculine and feminine, manifests modes of perfection by definition evoked by their respective sex; all cosmic qualities are divided in fact into two complementary groups."

This is just as the great physicist Neils Bohr might have predicted. In fact, in my list of 20th century metaphysical breakthroughs, I should have mentioned the principle of complementarity. In your day-to-day life, whenever you are confronted with a seemingly unresolvable paradox, it's almost always a case of complementarity -- not "either/or," but "both/and" -- for example, time/eternity, form/substance, subject/object, matter/spirit, wave/particle, conscious/unconscious, male/female, science/religion, intelligent design/natural selection, etc.

As it pertains to the complementarity of male/female, Schuon points out that there is naturally something anterior to this, which is "the non-material being that was the primordial androgyne," and "which survives in each of us." This is Adam Kadmon, the Cosmic Man, or divine blueprint for humans. Or, as I put it in the Coonifesto, The body, an ephemeral harmelody of adams forged from within stars, our life, a fugitive dream within the deathless, sleeping what's-His-G-d-name.

What this means in plain english -- I think -- is that the human form is a "harmelody," i.e., a complementary synthesis of vertical chords (the archetypes) and horizontal melody (or terrestrial plunge into time and evolution), and that we are of a nonlocal piece with the stars that gave birth to the elements of which we are composed. In other words, when a human being looks at a star in the night time sky, he is really registering photons from a long-ago event that might very well mirror his own cosmic birth. The cosmos is thoroughly entangled with itself in this bizarre manner, so that we can literally see our own cosmic past as it arrives at our doorstep.

And to say that we are but a fugitive dream within the deathless, sleeping what's-His-G-d-name, is simply to acknowledge that our life is a dream dreamt by the nonlocal Dreamer beyond name and form, a Dreamer that lives within our deepest Self. Yes,

The world of things that come to be and cease to be is a world of dreams. He who is asleep and dreaming (in the literal sense) in this world is in reality dreaming doubly; and when he wakes (in the literal sense), he is like a man who has been awakened from an "incidental" sleep, but has given himself up again to his "natural" sleep. --Hermes

So awaken to the great Dreamer who dreams the dream of this cosmos, and dream actively instead of being passively dreamt -- especially by the hypnopompous dreams of sleeping materialists.

I once had a dream. I dreamt that I, even though a man, was pregnant, pregnant and full with Nothingness like a woman who is with child. And out of this Nothingness God was born. --Meister Eckhart

If you have half an hour to spare, check it out. I think we have ourselves a new Black Messiah, definitely not the same as the old Black Messiah. It's what happens when one awakens from the slave-dream of the left. This guy's more dangerous to liberalism than marriage, hard work, and lack of self-pity (TW: Julie):

Monday, April 21, 2008

Heavenly Bodies & Earthy Souls (4.11.10)

Who, looking at the universe, would be so feeble-minded as not to believe that God is all in all; that he clothes himself with the universe, and at the same time contains it and dwells in it? --Gregory of Nyssa

To say that one believes in the self-evident truth of "intelligent design" is really to say that one believes in intelligence, especially human intelligence. For intelligence is nothing if it cannot know truth, and no random shuffling of Darwinian evolution could result in truth-bearing animals.

Rather, because the cosmos is logoistic, we should never be surprised to find traces of the logos wherever we look, whether in objects or in the subjects to whom they are intelligible. This is the absaridity in the reductionistic desert of orthodorks neo-Darwinism, in that it posits an absolute contingency capable of knowing absolute truth about itself. If it can do that, then it is no longer merely contingent, but participates in a transcendent absoluteness for which it can never account. Obviously there is relative truth in natural selection, but surely not absolute truth.

Instead of "intelligent design," one might just as well say "beautiful design." For example, underneath the temporal flux of the cosmos, we see those beautiful and elegant mathematical structures that seem to abide in a disembodied platonic realm of their own.

Yes, ugliness -- even butt ugliness -- "must needs be," but we can only know it because it is a privation. Only in the postmodern world "has ugliness become something like a norm or principle; in this case, beauty appears as a specialty, even a luxury" (Schuon). But this ugliness is merely an exteriorization of the endarkened souls who produce it, e.g., the aptly named Aliza Shvarts. It requires no talent, since it takes none to produce ugliness and barbarism. It requires the exertion of will to arrest it, and the application of talent to reverse it. To put it another way, some butts are quite beautiful.

It seems that our decline into the postmodern cult of ugliness began at the other end, with the aesthetic movement of "art for art's sake." But this was an aesthetics cut off from its transcendent source. Once that happened, then gravity took care of the rest, and down we went on a wilde ride to the bottom. Idolatry of the beautiful is still idolatry, which is why the modern art museum became a kind of church for irreligious sophisticates. It is also why so much modern art is ultimately "empty," because it has been drained of any transcendent reference. In the absence of transcendence, all art is merely decoration on our prison walls.

Art is obviously a form; but the form must skillfully convey something of the nonformal; it is the real presence of the infinite captured within, or radiating through, the finite. Schuon wrote that "beauty is the mirror of happiness [I would say delight] and truth." Without the element of delight, "there remains only the bare form," and without the element of truth, "there remains only an entirely subjective enjoyment -- a luxury," and we are stuck with a decadent aestheticism instead of aesthetics, which is as intellectualism to the intellect, just a counterfoot to the head.

In this regard, to say that there are no objective standards of aesthetic value is to insist (to paraphrase Schuon) that myopia and blindness are merely different ways of looking instead of "defects of vision." Stupidity is not just another form of intelligence. So why should we call formal ugliness art, especially when it ultimately serves as an accomplice in ushering man's spirit down and away from its source? This is a quintessential form of demonism, of black magic, a "revolt of the darkness." Obviously it doesn't "elevate," since the telovator of the postmodern mind can never ascend from the ground floor to begin with. But curiously, it can nevertheless descend. It can do this because this is where they locate the "real," in matter. This is why their vision is so hellish.

Now, what does this all have to do with the human body? I don't know yet. I guess we're about to find out.

Again, man is said to be the image and likeness of the Creator. It is the Raccoon position that we will therefore find traces of this deiformity in both our subjectivity (e.g., our capacity to know truth, to will the good, and to love beauty), but also in our material form.

This is not a new idea, but an archetypal one that belongs to the religio perennis, or the religion from which religion is derived. As the Orthodox Christian Olivier Clement writes, "There is no culture or religion that has not received and does not express a 'visitation of the Word.'" For "he is before all things, and in him all things hold together" (Col 1:16-17).

Quoting from Manly Hall's sometimes kooky, sometimes helpful Secret Teachings of All Ages, he writes that "The oldest, most profound, the most universal of all symbols is the human body. The Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, and Hindus considered philosophical analysis of man's triune nature to be an indispensable part of ethical and religious training."

In this approach, "the laws, elements, and powers of the universe were epitomized in the human constitution," so that "everything which existed outside of man had its analogue within man." An outgrowth of this was the notion that God is a "Grand Man," while man is a "little god." Thus, "the greater universe was termed the Macrocosm -- the Great World or Body," while man's body, "the individual human universe, was termed the Microcosm." As above, so below. Placed in this context, the idea that "the Word has become flesh" is perfectly comprehensible, even inevitable.

And in fact -- and we will get into this in more detail later -- even the secular scientist believes in this ancient formulation after his own fashion. To cite one obvious example, how is it that human beings are uniquely privileged to have access to the abstract formal system that rules the heavens? In other words, the quantum cosmologist "contains" the cosmos just as surely as it contains him.

But this is what the Christian has always believed; it is the materialist who cannot account for this mystery: "Understand that you have within yourself, upon a small scale, a second universe" (Origen). "Man, this major world in miniature, is a unified abridgment of all that exists, and the crowning of divine works" (St. Gregory of Palamas). "Man is the microcosm in the strictest sense of the word. He is the summary of all existence" (John Scottus Erigena). "All things in Heaven above, and Earth beneath, meet in the Constitution of each individual" (Peter Sterry).

You will often hear reductionistic Darwinians refute design with reference to certain "ugly" realities in the world, say, the mosquito, or man's windpipe being too close to the esophagus, or Randi Rhodes' voice. And yet, such quibbles actually "praise God," being that there is an implicit recognition or "recollection" of perfection.

But again, the manifestation is not the Principle, otherwise the world would be God. Nevertheless, as Schuon points out, "the world is fundamentally made of beauty, not ugliness.... and [it] could not contain ugliness if it did not contain a priori far more beauty." Likewise, contingency and randomness necessarily exist, but they are ultimately harnessed by a higher ordering principle to achieve newer and deeper syntheses. There is no metabolism without catabolism.

Running out of time. Here's a johnish quote to ponder and a petrified pun to quander:

"The Father is God beyond all, the origin of all that is. The incarnate Son is God with us, and he who becomes incarnate is none other than the Logos who gives form to the world by his creative words. The Spirit of God in us, the Breath, the Pneuma, gives life to all and brings every object to its proper perfection. The Logos appears as order and intelligibility, the Pneuma as dynamism and life.... Thus, to contemplate the smallest object is to experience the Trinity: the very being of the object takes us back to the Father; the meaning it expresses, its logos, speaks to us of the Logos; its growth to fullness and beauty reveals the Breath, the Life-giver" (Olivier Clement).

And His name & number shall be Immanuelent, which trancelighted, means "Godwithinus." --The Coonifesto (see also Matt 1:23)

To be continued....

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